What's Making Me Talk: Excuse Us, We've Got Some Baseball to Play

Nino Colla@TheTribeDailySenior Writer IFebruary 16, 2009

It's rather unfortunate that last week's buzz about Pitchers and Catchers reporting was overshadowed by some steroid admission scandal that we won't bother bringing up.

We're on baseball's time now, so let's make use of it with talk about the only thing that matters, baseball, not needles and pills.

You can venture over to the free clinic or ESPN if you wish to discuss that, here, it's all about baseball.

J.D. Drew, We Really Do Know You

It's not even March and J.D. Drew is injured, is anyone not surprised?

A herniated disk from 2008 is said to be giving the Red Sox outfielder an issue with back stiffness.

Oh, but don't worry, he can still do all the stuff you'd expect a guy that's getting paid $14 million dollars to do.

How can this possibly be good for the Red Sox in anyway? A team that traded a useful reserve in Coco Crisp and no longer has the luxury of Manny Ramirez, they are in no position to be in this position.

The trade in Crisp didn't so much say they were ready for Jacoby Ellsbury to be the full-time guy, nor did it say they were confident in getting Jason Bay locked up for a long-term deal.

No, it really said they had faith in J.D. Drew and most importantly, his health.

Hey, I'm sure Drew could play right now and by the time the regular season rolls around, if he has to sit out most of Spring Training even, he'll be healthy.

But it's exhausting for me and I don't even root for the team the guy plays for.

I'm also personally not confident in quotes like, "I'm hopeful" in terms of his injury. That type of stuff would cause me to turn at night and I already turn quite a bit to begin with.


A few weeks, maybe a month ago, I wondered, not just who would pick up Ken Griffey Jr., but who should pick him up.

I had no clue, because I wasn't sure if anyone was going to guarantee him a spot. I'm sure there would be teams out there to give him a shot if he were to be the designated hitter, but is there any AL team out there with the money?

Now, Griffey's destinations seem to be down to Atlanta and a return to Seattle.

Either way, I think we all win.

It would be nice to see Griffey make his last go-around with the team that we will remember him with most. Dawning the Mariners cap, being able to maybe bring along youngsters like Wladimir Balentien and Franklin Gutierrez, teach them some things not just about hitting, but fielding.

Ending his career with the franchise people know he was his best with.

Or he could be down in Atlanta, where we can just be happy that he's happy. He gets to do something he's always wanted to do in playing for a legend like Bobby Cox. He'd be teaming up with a few fellow future Hall of Famers in Chipper Jones and possibly Tom Glavine.

He'd be closer to his family than ever before, especially with the Braves' camp being in Orlando.

Either way, I'm glad he's getting another shot at a destination that we know we'll make a lot of sense to Ken Griffey Jr.Finally! The Money's Not Important

We always say "Good for him" in response to the few people who actually take less-money to stay somewhere.

I know it's out there, why should we applaud a guy for not taking an extra three or four million bucks?

I'll answer you in a quick six letter word, because that's all that is needed.


You see, sometimes we have a player that comes along that has them, values.

So when that player comes along, I think we better do our damnedest to applaud him for having them. Sure, it's four million less out of what, 20 million, what does he really care in the whole grand scheme of things?

It has to do with what he values more.

Of course, I'm talking about Albert Pujols' recent comments about staying in St. Louis.

"People from other teams want to play in St. Louis and they're jealous that we're in St. Louis because the fans are unbelievable. So why would you want to leave a place like St. Louis to go somewhere else and make $3 or $4 more million a year? It's not about the money. I already got my money. It's about winning and that's it. It's about accomplishing my goal and my goal is to try to win. If this organization shifts the other way then I have to go the other way."

This is really what it's all about.

He realizes that he's already made more money than he'll ever need for him, his kids and his kids' kids. So why should he leave a situation like the one in St. Louis over a few million?

Now will he leave if St. Louis doesn't show a commitment to winning? Sure, but you know that will never happen, because the Cardinals are a top-class organization who's always committed to fielding a contending team, year-in and year-out.

So for once in our lives, instead of paying attention to that steroid scandal, or concerning ourselves if Manny Ramirez is going to sign today, tomorrow, or April 15th, let's take a step back and applaud Albert Pujols.

It would certainly mean a lot more of any other player who isn't making as much to say this kind of thing, but for a superstar to finally step up and say, "No, I don't need it, I'd much rather stay here and try to win."

That's refreshing.

The Round-About of Randomness

Mood-Lightener of your week right here; Padres relief pitcher Heath Bell lost some weight this offseason, and what does he owe it to? The Wii Fit of course!

"It said I was obese. If you're obese, it makes [your character on screen] obese. I was disappointed that I was that big. I literally took the game to heart. I did the work but I kind of credit the Wii Fit."

I've actually heard about this making your character look fat thing. That really is discouraging, but it sounds like it works.

Maybe as a welcoming gift back to Chicago, Ozzie Guillen should buy Bartolo Colon one of these games. A nice subtle hint couldn't hurt his chances for a rotation spot, could it?

Great for Heath Bell though. He's taking over for a legend in Trevor Hoffman, so dropping the extra 25 pounds could only help him, as long as he isn't losing his velocity.

I love the cool stories about players and some of the things they've had to do to get where they are. Brad Ziegler's attempt to prove last year was no fluke is just as "cool."

Ziegler actually practices his throwing motion inside his house, randomly. Well if you don't know much of the back-story, let me try and fill you in real quick, because Buster Olney's story doesn't.

In the minor leagues, Ziegler actually was hit in the head with a line drive off the bat of Giants' outfielder Fred Lewis. So he changed his throwing motion, just like that.

So now he's got to continually repeat his motion, because it's not something he's been doing his whole life, he's actually still learning it.

Seems like a perfectly reasonable excuse to put the dog outside. Better than mine, which involves putting him outside just because he barks too much.

I hear Randy Johnson is feeling a lot better these days. The pressure is off, the attention, for now at least, really isn't on him that much. He's back home and most importantly, he's healthy.

He's pitching for a team that has a few younger-guns, so he can afford to be laid back and take in life without the mass-amount of pressure.

With Cy Young award winner Tim Lincecum and the young Matt Cain heading up a rotation, who needs to worry?

Especially with a mega-millionaire like Barry Zito pitching behind you, that money your making is like chump change.

Great for Randy Johnson and the situation he's got himself into. Hopefully he can pass the 300-win mark and go riding off into the sunset when he's ready. He's put in enough time to have a year like the one he could potentially have in 2009.

What's Making Me Talk runs every Monday of the baseball season, or whenever Nino has the time to waste, provided that you don't throw things at him.


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